Community Health Worker Initiative of Sonoma County

Vision y Compromiso

Visión y Compromiso

Promotoras and Community Health Workers Network

VyC NAPA -Monthly Meeting Invitation

Lunes 19 de Agostos de11:00am-1:00pm

Queen of the Valley Outreach department

3348 Villa Lane, Suite 102 NAPA

Contact: Gina Enríquez

VyC 5th Annual Northern California and Bay Area conference

SaturdaySeptember 24thFrom 8:30 a.m.To 4:00 p.m

Contact: Chely Romero 

VYC Northern California Regional Director  (510) 427-2643

Ficha de inscripcion Bay Area Conference 2011.pdf Ficha de inscripcion Bay Area Conference 2011.pdf
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Bay Area Conference 2011 REGISTRATION.pdf Bay Area Conference 2011 REGISTRATION.pdf
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Maria Lemus: Executive Director

"Promotoras and Community Health Workers (CHW’s) play a critical role in promoting community-based health education and prevention, particularly in communities that have been historically underserved by the U.S. health care system. Promotoras and CHW’s represent a rich spectrum of characteristics that makes them the bridge between health care institutions, professional providers and community residents in need of health care services"

If you would like to learn more follow the link...

Maria Lemus  was our guest at the Third CHWISC wisdom circle and  shared who Vision Y Compromiso are and how VyC operate : 

For those of you that were able to attend the third CHWISC Wisdom Circle you had the pleasure meeting Maria Lemus in person. For these who would like to read more about what Maria had to share with us she has kindly sent us a copy of  several documents and news article that will help us understand who Vy C are and what their priorities are.


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Thank you Maria for sharing your wisdom with us!

Vision Y Compromiso were featured in the March 2011 Minority Health Connection Newsletter:

"Vision y Compromiso is the first statewide network in California dedicated to supporting and developing the work of promotoras and community health workers throughout the state. Promotoras and community health workers address problems that lead to underuse of important health services and help combat the causes of poor health in Latino communities. Maria Lemus, executive director of Vision y Compromiso, describes promotoras as people who care about their community and are willing to give back. With a large population of Latinos in California, promotoras are important in making sure that the working poor, underinsured, and uninsured get the health services they need. However, promotoras and community health workers do not only specialize in health-related services; they help Latinos in many other areas of their lives.   

Vision y Compromiso’s primary role is providing promotoras with information. The organization’s Office of Patient Advocates holds community forums to educate the community about the benefits and rights of medical insurance recipients. And, the organization works with promotoras one on one. Lemus stresses the importance of getting information to promotoras because they reach the people. Unfortunately, many promotoras lack access to computers and vehicles. To reach the network of promotoras, the organization must go to them. Staff members host gatherings for promotoras in each region once a month. Trainers schedule these workshops and trainings at times that work for promotoras’ schedules. Lemus mentioned that many events for promotoras happen at night to accommodate the many promotoras who work and have children. 

The organization’s work continues to evolve, particularly with the passage of health reform. The group hosts conferences and trainings for the promotoras, and last year the focus of their annual conference was the Affordable Care Act. This conference brought 900 promotoras together to talk about the importance of health reform and its role in the Latino community. 

In addition to serving as a resource for promotoras, Vision y Compromiso helps promotoras to advocate on behalf of the Latino community. To understand the policy behind the daily issues Latinos in California face, the organization holds many training sessions on mental health, diabetes, disabilities, financial literacy, reproductive justice, and many other topics. They also host the Policy Advocacy Leadership Program, which gives experienced promotoras the skills necessary to delve deeper into advocacy and legislative work, focusing especially on how that work can be used to make a difference in obesity and eating behaviors in Latino communities.

Each year, Vision y Compromiso hosts a legislative day, which provides the opportunity for promotoras from various communities from the state to lobby on the health needs of their communities. Last spring, nearly 100 promotoras came together at California’s state capital to advocate for the Universal Health Care Act, which would provide health coverage for every person living in California. 

Vision y Compromiso is a great example of how to bring health issues to the forefront in a community using trusted messengers to give beneficial and essential information to the general public. "

Maria Lemus; Executive Director

(510) 303-3444

Melinda Cordero-Bárzaga; Associate Director
(626) 864-6117

Alma Esquivel; Southern California Regional Director
(213) 613-0632

Chely Romero; Northern California Regional Director
(510) 427-2643

Vicky Avila; Special Projects Coordinator

Cristina Correa; Policy Associate

Isalia Zumaya; Administrative Assistant

Fax No: (213) 613-0633

1000 N. Alameda Street, Suite 350

Los Angeles, CA, 90012


 Community Health Workers Initiative of Sonoma County


APHA Definition of a Community Health Worker

"A Community Health Worker (CHW) is a frontline public health worker who is a trusted member of and/or has an unusually close understanding of the community served. This trusting relationship enables the CHW to serve as a liaison/link/intermediary between health/social services and the community to facilitate access to services and improve the quality and cultural competence of service delivery.

A CHW also builds individual and community capacity by increasing health knowledge and self-sufficiency through a range of activities such as outreach, community education, informal counseling, social support and advocacy."  

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